Police are investigating after a woman was hit over the head by a man in Bournemouth town centre before being robbed and sexually assaulted.

Detectives are investigating a report that a woman was assaulted, robbed and sexually assaulted last Friday, July 29 in broad daylight.

It was reported that the victim, a woman aged in her 50s, left the Boots store in Commercial Road at around 2.40pm and walked across the road to Bournemouth Central Gardens, where she sat down on a bench opposite Boots.

While she was sitting there, she was struck on the back of the head by an unknown man and knocked unconscious. The next thing she recalled was waking up at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital, having arrived there at 5.45pm. The victim reported she had been sexually assaulted and her phone, bank card and other items had been stolen.

Detective Constable Evelyn Ahmadi, of Bournemouth CID, said: “We have launched a full investigation into this incident and have carried out a number of enquiries, including a review of available CCTV footage. We are also supporting the victim.

“I understand the area was busy on the afternoon of Friday 29 July 2022, with a number of pedestrians in the vicinity, and I would urge anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity, or came across a woman in a distressed state, to please contact us.

“We understand reports of this nature can cause concern for the local community. Officers will be continuing to carry out enquiries in the area and can be approached by members of the public with information or concerns.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk/contact, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55220123392.